Why Hazaras Have Failed to Get Themselves Recognized As a Nation in Australia?

Australia – May 18, 2014 |

 

Hazaras-in-Australia-400

 

Australia is considered to be home to the fourth largest population of Hazaras in the world which is estimated to be over 50,000. Majority of these Hazaras have migrated from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran in pursuit of safe haven after fleeing persecution and discrimination in their homelands.

Hazaras’ migration to Australia can be divided into three phases. First phase being in 1999-2000 when Hazaras mostly from Afghanistan reached Australia by boat to seek asylum after being persecuted by Taliban regime. Second phase was in 2009-10 when Hazaras both from Afghanistan and Pakistan migrated to Australia as irregular maritime arrivals. The third and last phase of Hazaras influx to Australia was witnessed in 2012-13 when Hazara genocide was touching its peak in Pakistan. Apart from migration by boats, a number of Hazaras also came to Australia by plane as students, visitors, tourists and businessmen who later sought here protection due to threats to their lives in their native countries.

 

Hazaras who arrived in Australia fourteen years ago have now established them well in this country by working in various public and private sector organizations and opening up new businesses in different cities. Melbourne’s south east suburb of Dandenong is considered to be the largest Hazara enclave in Australia. Sydney houses the second largest population of Hazaras followed by Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth. Being unqualified and less-educated, Hazaras are mostly engaged in labour work in Australia. Nevertheless, some of them who are highly educated, do occupy covetous posts in various organizations.

 

Hazaras had earned a very good reputation in Australia as a diligent nation through their hard work in the beginning which gradually faded away as they started depending on the dole for their livelihood instead of working and playing their role in strengthening Australian economy. But, the successive Australian governments are equally responsible for this situation and promotion of the trend to rely on the living allowance as many a people who are drawing financial benefits from Centrelink are of the view that together with their families on the dole they get more money than by working five days a week from morning till evening. This loophole in the system still exists which needs to be addressed to get people off the dole.

Apart from being on the dole, Hazaras, however, have still a good reputation in other spheres of life. They are far away from criminal and anti-social activities and considered to be peaceful, docile, education-loving and law-abiding people unlike many other nationalities living in Australia. Nevertheless, like their fellow community people in Pakistan and Afghanistan, Hazaras in Australia have also some negative qualities which have proved to be the main obstacles in their way to make rapid progress and earn fame as a nation. They can be described as under:

 

•        Despite living in Australia for over a decade, Hazaras are still hesitant to mingle with other nationalities particularly locals. They have their own enclaves in all major cities and prefer to interact with members of their own community only. This is why most of them are still unaware of the Australian culture and traditions as well as unable to speak English fluently.

 

•        Almost in every major cities, Hazaras are divided into a number groups formed on the basis of sect, taifa (sub-caste) and nationality. These groups are so antagonistic to one another that sometimes their differences even reach to the point of clash. They prefer to hold their own separate ceremonies and functions at different sites to celebrate and observe various events than to organize them jointly at a single place.

 

•        There is no active central organization which could represent them as a whole nation.  There is, however, one such organization by the name of Australian Hazara Federation but it is not as much active and effective as it should have been. Its performance regarding solution of the problems confronting Hazaras in Australia and highlighting Hazara genocide and persecution in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran is almost nil.

•        Hazaras are still unable to develop a collective thinking. They are all self-centred and only think about their own individual interests.

 

•        Despite having a sizeable population, Hazaras have still no influence on federal politics and penetration in Australian media. They have never tried to develop special relationship with their area MPs and media personnel. They have never realized the importance of lobbying and power of their votes in Australian politics.

 

•        They are least interested in playing their role to stop the persecution of their fellows in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran and paving way for their legal migration to Australia. Similarly, they are also not willing to play a role in mitigating the sufferings of the newly-arrived Hazara asylum seekers in Australia and those stuck in Indonesia.

 

•        Like Pakistan and Afghanistan, Hazaras in Australia too are lacking in honest, sincere and true leadership. Hazaras have not yet produced any high-profile leaders in Australia who can convey and discuss their problems with the people at the helm of affairs and seek its solution.

•        Hazaras are still unable to get themselves recognized as a nation that is why Australians identify them as Afghanis instead of Hazaras. There is no doubt that most of them have born in Afghanistan, but when there comes the issue of identity they should better be called Hazaras or Afghan Hazaras instead of Afghanis which alludes to another nationality namely Pashtuns.

Australian Hazaras must keep it in their mind that they are in the most advantageous position amongst all Hazaras in the world at the moment. While understanding their obligation to raise voice against persecution of Hazaras anywhere in the world, they need to take full benefit of this opportunity. They must not repeat the mistakes committed by their forefathers in Afghanistan and Pakistan which finally led to their ouster from their homelands. It is the demand of time they shun their petty differences, develop a collective thinking, forge unity among their ranks, and work with full dedication, to get themselves recognized as one of the most civilized and organized nation not only in Australia but in the entire world.

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Haider Ali

The writer is a Human Rights activist in Australia and can be contacted at: haiderali.aus@gmail.com

14 Responses to Why Hazaras Have Failed to Get Themselves Recognized As a Nation in Australia?

  1. Ali Reply

    May 18, 2014 at 10:27 pm

    It’s a worth-reading piece of writing. Despite a few things that are not agreeable. like considering ALL Hazaras as Afghani Hazaras which is not the case, the facts are well analyzed.

  2. Haleema Reply

    May 19, 2014 at 8:16 am

    Absolutely true words reflecting exactly what we are doing staying in Australia. The major change we have brought is maximizing the gape or rich and poor among our people staying in Quetta. The females having great contribution in our society have done nothing instead of increasing “SIALDARI” by investing huge amounts on clothing and home decoration with “centrelink” aid. Same things used to happen in Quetta, and we(educated girls) still appreciate repeating it on advance scale.

  3. Sadiq Noyan Reply

    May 19, 2014 at 9:57 am

    Hi Haidar Ali

    You have raised important points, It is appreciable to realize their core responsibilities and not to forgetting as to why they were ousted from their homeland and what can can not play any effective role on systematic genocide of Hazara.

  4. Mohammad Azad Reply

    May 19, 2014 at 10:29 am

    I’m fully agree with this topic as we never had any true leader who could work for the nation. From the other side the problems that we created in our own community and the selfishness of ourself directed us into the darkness. We need to work together to solve the issue same as our old grandfathers who made a good name for our tribe. Thanks for the topic and wish you all the best

  5. Manzoor Hussain Reply

    May 19, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    از خودگون خو زیاد توقع دریم۔
    ہر چیز د دیگ بود د کاسہ مایہ۔

  6. Asad Ali Changezi Reply

    May 19, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    An idealist and nirvana concept for social and cultural cohesivness that has ignored Australian policy for multiculturalism.. HAZARA’S OF PAKISTAN and AFGHAMISTAN is a reality. They should learn to co exist. Domination of a new cultural mind set will add to the confusion. We should learn to accept pholosphy and policy of co -existence. Australia emcourages multifaith and multicultural practices. Auch ideal approaches will aleniate them. Leta accept multiculture and multifaith principals.

  7. ASAD ALI Reply

    May 20, 2014 at 4:12 am

    The article sounds to be politically motivated. I am not sure why such deliberate moves has been initiated to de-identify and then generalize the situation of Hazara’s of Pakistan and Afghanistan in the same context. The article has shown that Hazara’s in Australia are most blessed, well it has not presented any data. I argue that Hazara’s in Pakistan are still at the advantageous position than Hazara around the world. Pakistan has been kind to them and the situation in last 20 years has been worsened because of the creators of such philosophies which is trying to generalize Hazara’s of Pakistan with Afghanistan and Iran, and our political thinkers have not worked to align them with Pakistan on political and social grounds. I salute our Professionals in Pakistan that they are struggling to contribute to Pakistan. But at the same time I protest against all those political and social activist who are still doing politics of Bamyan and Qom in Quetta which is part of Pakistan. So lets work together to the philosophy of co existence instead of working on a philosophy of general cohesion claim that Hazara’s of Pakistan Afghanistan and Iran is same and they have similar intellectual , moral and social values. No we dont have similar settings and we have to admit this and learn to co exist with all of other hazaras. We can have a good life in Australia by following our our forefathers policies that they followed in Pakistan between (1806-2000). We already had an established model of Pakistan which is a common wealth which can lead us in Australia which is also a common wealth.

  8. Mohammad ali Reply

    May 20, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    You are, although not the first one who is showing the path towards some change: your own words: Mistakes committed in the past: before, during and after 1890 and specially after Inqalab.e.sour and Irani inqalab…..a lot of mistakes (still continued) are made by our people, we are facing

    the results, meanwhile we have to reach a stage of collective thinking how to avoid such mistakes. on the other side, where ever there are a few Hazaras some Mulla appears from somewhere to show us the path of Jannat. Before finding that path we have to secure the future of our people Hazaras only not afghani or anything else.

  9. Adnan Reply

    May 20, 2014 at 5:33 pm

    A very good article, keep it up, Bro!!!

  10. Hazara Reply

    May 22, 2014 at 7:35 am

    Well written & an absolute true message to All those “Khao Rafta” ”still in dream” Lazy Hazaras whom living in more Advanced & peaceful Country like Australia. They forgot about everything before money except keeping their face among rivals (US). We should never forget that we are Hazara (Azra) & Our real duties. We can never be able to change our Appearance, our Past, Our History, Our Race etc where ever We live & Whatever We Do… Why hazara people never learn their Lessons except continue bearing Hardships & Facing problems? We still got time to be practical, better late than never.

  11. Ramat yousafi Reply

    May 26, 2014 at 11:54 am

    Concerned Over the Failure of the recognition of the Hazaras in Australia.

    —I have been through this article by Mr. haider Ali before and I also appreciate Mr. haider who had put the effort on this article, I thought to share my view and knowledge on this article.
    As Mr. Haider Divided the arrival of hazaras in Australia in three periods of time.
    the first group of the people who arrived in 1999 or 2000, than in 2009 and in 2012.

    The people who arrived in 2000 mostly were un-educatedand and from the most disdvantage claas of the Hazara people from Afghanistan,Pakistan, Iran and some middle eastern countries, if we analyse them on the basis of their profession among them, Bread makers, the shoe makers, labourers, mine workers and shop keepers and unskilld workers in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Arab countries, among them we did not have acadamics or high educated people.

    As Mr. Haider as mentoned that despite living in Australia over a decade now, we still hesitant to integrate or interact with other Australians and thats why we are not aware of the Australian culture and traditions and he is also pointing out that the Hazaras are divided in different organisations and groups which were formed on the basis of Sect,Taifa or nationality, in correction if I say Taifa, relegious and none relegious, Qaria( we can not use Nationality here because nationality means something differnt), even if I say divided in families than I am not wrong, we have people isolated within the families.
    Mr. Haider argues that we do not have a central organisation to represent us as a whole, I think he is true that we are divided in those aboved points mentioned by him, but we have to think that what is the cuases of all these problem we are facing?

    I think the most important thing is the lack of education, the lack of social and political consciousness among the Hazara masses in Australia, and the other reason is mejority of the Hazaras from Afghanistan who came to Austraial are the people who fought each other for many many years in Afghanistan, the idealogical differences keep them away from each other, even those time when they fought gone long ago and we can not find the ashes of those organisations in afghanistan, but becase they killed and fought each other, and the deep wound takes time to be treated.

    As I remember In early 2000 there was a huge differences among the Hazaras came from the differnt places, they hardly trust each other, they used to blame each other of snatching their rights, in many occasion they openly criticised each other and established an enviroment of mistrust, thats why they were not successful to form an organisation which can represent all, it is not that there were not an effort done, many time there were seriouse attempt took place but every time the politics of back home involved in it and because of these mistrust and the differences among them did not lead us there, the people used to accused each other from Quetta, Iran Afghanistan, Jaghori, Bahsod, communist, Mula and progressive(Roshan fiker).

    Now come to the point when the time arrived to form Hazara Council in 2010 ( currently Hazara Fedration) hosted by the oganisationsins in Melbourne and tried to form an organisation to represnt all the people, our thought behind that was to take stand over the real issues for Instance, this Umbrella organisation with the help of all organisations in Austrila should have top priorities in its menfisto;

    1. A firm stand on the issue of the Hazara killings especially in Quetta.
    2. the issues of the refugges comming in Australia.
    3. the Umbrella organisation with the help of their member organisations all around australia should pay full attention on the educaton of our children.
    4. the umbrella organisation should do cultural work for the Masses
    5. the woman should be treated as human in our society, must not be treated being a thing.and provide them full oppertunity for their development.

    But from the first day all the Mullahs and the so-called Roshan Fiker got togather and elected a person as a president who was studied in Hoza in Qum for many many years and unfortunatetly he has a very deep sampathy with Iran and he also did not have good reputation among the people who know him , and the time has proved it that he is th wrong selection, It took this person and the people around him to arrange the election of the Hazara Fedration three years which supposed to happen every year, and during this long period the damege has done already.

    Hazar Fedration’s policy over the refugee issue was shamefull, this organisation never worked seriously over this issue and shamefully the policy of the organisation went against the refugees, for instance on many occasions when the refugees had undergone hard time in the detention centres around Astralian detentions and when they need outside help those deperate people found the telephone and mobile numbers of the Hazara Fedration’s responsible persons off.

    In 2012 the organisation’s president visited Canbrra on the invitation of the govenrment to endors the govenment’s PNG deal(the agent between the government and the Hazara Fedration was well known person Mr. Paris Aristotal), the people never forget that shamfull endorsment..
    the organisation also used some so called haji’s, shopkeepers and Mullahs to curb the members organisations in Melbourne and that policy is still continoue.

    the Fedration never adopted a policy to give oppertunity to the women to come forward and unfortunatly most of them are very relegious and they believe that women should remain in the house and there are many other inside stories to tell…………..

    The other point Mr. Haider has mentioned that the Hazaras are not interacting with others, I think because the Australian society is 100% differnt to our society back home, we have been tuaght that we as a shia are pure and the rest of the world are not, we will go to janat and the rest will not, we have a concept of Halal and Haram, we teach our children not to interact with others in their schools especially with the girls, we stricted our families only to interact with our own culture.
    I personally belief that for a commen uneducated person it is natural to scare of these changes, new society, new cultural, and new issues, when they arrived here and realised that they cant force and beat their woman in the new society it was shocking for them, when they found that their children are going to School with the Co_education, and there children study about the sex and they sit togather with boys and girls on one banch in the school and they can make friendships, it is very hard time for the mejority of the people, thats why we can see a rise of divorce and conflict in many famlies.

    lets find out what we can do?
    I personally believe that we can not bring all the people under one banner and it is not natural, because as other human societies we are also belong to this planet and we have differences from now and from the past, and I do not believe that we can be united over every issue blindly,
    for example if some one in australia believe to follow the policy of the Islamic regim of Irani Mullahs for me it is impossible to follow and keep silent, if some think we have to do only hazaragi politics and Isolate oursleves from the rest of the society, as we have experienced in Pakistan and Afghanistan where we have isloated ourselves from the rest of the society, and we never tried to have good relationship with our neighboures in afghanistan and in pakistan, we broght the ignorant Mullahs from Panjab and sind to spread hatred between people in pakistan( Now we are doing in australia ), we used bad words against the faith believes of our neighbours i do not want to mention those silly words here but you know better than me.
    Iran has used us for their political purposes in Pakistan and Afghanistan and this policy is still continioue in both places.

    Or if some silly people taking the Ashura jaloos to the Australian cities or behave woman as we were behaving them back home I think it is difficult to get unite, instead maybe we find some commen Issues, for example the killing of Hazaras or the refugee issues, but on all other issues we should find the people with same Idealogy and people from same school of thought, and at the end I request that the educated people must come forward and do their share.

  12. afau Reply

    June 26, 2014 at 3:38 am

    It will never happen for Hazaras to be recognised as a nation in Australia. We all come from Afghanistan and Hazaras contribute to only %20 of the population in the country, so we are all recognised as Afghan in Australia. Moreover, Tajiks, Pashtons and etc also live in Australia and it is not possible for each of these nationalities to be recognised individually. Don’t want to forget I am a Hazara too.

  13. Yasin Reply

    June 26, 2014 at 7:30 am

    Well done!
    Thanks for sharing us :)

  14. Zakir Hussain Reply

    August 2, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    In my openion we should recognize us as a hazara nation in Austrelia because Austerelia’goverment didnt acceped us as a Afghani they acceped as hazara fram afghanistan pakistan and manyother countries

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